The lecture will contrast the situation ten years ago (when BR was using the advertising slogan "This is the Age of the Train") with that now. Ten years ago, BR was suffering from a prolonged lack of investment and widespread rail closures were seen as inevitable. Today, BR has enjoyed a decade in which passenger traffic has risen, services improved and investment risen to high levels. Despite the difficulties caused by the recession, plans are being made for a continuing high level of investment in rail and light rail services in the 1990's. The paper will consider whether, in the light of growing environmental concerns and increased rail traffic, this is really the `Age of the Train'. It will draw extensively on research undertaken at Leeds in the last ten years, and will also consider policy changes needed for rail to play its full part in the transport policy of the future
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